Join in: Open until September 10, 2021

The pandemic has brought a rapid and significant increase in electronic payments and online transactions. Small and medium-sized businesses, which have been hard hit by COVID-19, incur fees for these transactions also known as interchange fees, which in Canada are amongst the highest in the world.

As first announced in Budget 2021, the government is moving forward with consultations to further reduce credit card transaction fees to lower the cost of doing business, particularly for small businesses. These savings will allow small and medium-sized businesses recovering from COVID-19 to save money and direct financial resources toward growth and job creation.

Who is the focus of this consultation?

All interested members of the public are invited to provide input relevant to the scope of this consultation. The government will also engage with key stakeholders to advance the goals outlined below.

Our objectives

This consultation seeks feedback in support of three objectives:

  • lowering the average overall cost of interchange fees for merchants;
  • ensuring that small businesses benefit from pricing that is similar to large businesses; and
  • protecting existing rewards points of consumers.

Participate through email

Due to COVID-19 public health considerations, email submissions are preferred. Send us your comments at with "Reducing Credit Card Transaction Fees" as the subject line. Should you wish to provide comments by mail, please direct your submission to the attention of the Financial Sector Policy Branch.

Submissions should be made in plain text or PDF formats. Please include:

  • full name of the official;
  • name of the organization;
  • full mailing address, including postal code;
  • telephone number, including area code; and
  • reply email address.

What's next?

Following the consultations, next steps will be detailed in the next Fall Economic Statement, including legislative amendments to the Payment Card Networks Act that would provide authority to regulate interchange fees, if necessary.

Treatment of confidential information

Information received through this comment process is subject to the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act. Those providing comments are asked to indicate clearly the name of the individual or the organization that should be identified as having made the submission. In order to respect privacy and confidentiality, please advise when providing your comments whether you:

  • consent to the disclosure of your comments in whole or in part;
  • request that your identity and any personal identifiers be removed prior to publication; or
  • wish that any portions of your comments be kept confidential (if so, clearly identify the confidential portions).

Should you indicate that your comments, or any portions thereof, be considered confidential, the Department of Finance will make all reasonable efforts to protect this information.

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